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August 15, 2007

CW Electronic Field Trip Series premieres three new programs for 2007-2008 season

Colonial Williamsburg’s Emmy-award-winning Electronic Field Trip series begins Oct. 11 with an encore of “Jamestown Unearthed,” in commemoration of the 400th anniversary of the founding of Jamestown, Va.

Three new programs premiere during the season. “Emissaries of Peace” takes a look at the Cherokee Nation and the desire its leaders had for peace. “Founders or Traitors” examines the risk taken by signers of the Declaration of Independence; and “Treasure Keepers” reveals the painstaking efforts of the museum conservators who preserve history for future generations.

Electronic Field Trips are broadcast one Thursday each month from October through April at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Eastern time on participating PBS stations and cable channels across the country. Students in participating schools may phone in questions to costumed interpreters and historians during the broadcasts on live television.

Registered users also may view Electronic Field Trips via the Internet. The programs consist of a one-hour live broadcast which includes a story on subjects from the colonial period through the early life of the United States. The productions are supported with comprehensive lesson plans, glossaries, timelines, Internet activities and online connectivity to Colonial Williamsburg historians.

"Jamestown Unearthed” is a documentary that examines how history is written and re-evaluated as new methods of study are introduced and archaeological discoveries offer new clues to interpreting history. In May 1607, when 104 English men and boys first stepped onto Jamestown Island, they could not have imagined the impact their arrival would have on the future of the world. Hoping for adventure, escaping the past, longing for riches or a better life, the Jamestown colonists founded America’s first permanent English settlement – and a new nation. These early settlers would never know that everyday items they left behind, from the soles of their shoes to broken pipe stems would be excavated and examined four centuries later by Jamestown Rediscovery archaeologists. What these archaeologists discovered – and how they used these clues to uncover the past – is the subject of “Jamestown Unearthed.”

The documentary was produced by Colonial Williamsburg’s division of productions, publications and learning ventures in partnership with the Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities–Jamestown Rediscovery. The program explores historical myths and misconceptions from the perspective of modern archaeology.

In addition to “Jamestown Unearthed,” the 2007-2008 school year includes the following Electronic Field Trips:

  • Nov. 8, 2007: “Emissaries of Peace” (Premiere) – During the turbulent era of the French and Indian War, follow Cherokee leaders on their 1762 journey from the capital of the Cherokee nation to Williamsburg and London in search of peace.
  • Dec. 6, 2007: “Founders or Traitors?” (Premiere) – Join Edward Rutledge, Benjamin Franklin and John Adams as they meet with British Admiral Lord Howe hoping to end the American rebellion peacefully, and discover the risks taken by the signers of the Declaration of Independence.
  • Jan. 10, 2008: “For Ready Money” – Learn about the colonial economy through the eyes of an apprentice merchant.
  • Feb. 7, 2008: “No Master Over Me” – Emmy-winning EFT is told through the voice of Ann Ashby, whose husband worked to purchase his own wife and children to gain their freedom.
  • March 6, 2008: “Treasure Keepers” (Premiere) – Learn how museum conservators prevent or slow damage from “agents of destruction” to preserve history for future generations.
  • April 10, 2008: “The Industrious Tradesmen” – Follow the lives of journeymen in trades as they work to become masters of their own shops.

    As the nation’s leading educational resource for early American history, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation uses the Internet and interactive television technology to bring the 18th century to life for more than one million students throughout the United States each year. For more information or to register for the Electronic Field Trip Series visit or contact the Electronic Field Trip registrar at 1-800-761-8331 or by e-mail at

    Established in 1926, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is the not-for-profit educational institution that preserves and operates the restored 18th-century Revolutionary capital of Virginia as a town-sized living history museum, telling the inspirational stories of our nation’s founding men and women. Within the restored and reconstructed buildings, historic interpreters, attired as colonial men and women from slaves to shopkeepers to soldiers, relate stories of colonial Virginia society and culture — stories of our journey to become Americans – while historic tradespeople research, demonstrate and preserve the 18th-century world of work and industry. As Colonial Williamsburg interprets life in the time of the American Revolution for its guests, it also invites them to interact with history. Williamsburg is located 150 miles south of Washington, D.C., off Interstate 64. For more information or reservations, call toll-free 1-800-HISTORY or visit Colonial Williamsburg on the Internet at

    Media Contact:
    Barbara Brown
    (757) 220-7280

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